I’ve only just discovered this forum and it is frightening how many women are in a similar position to mine!
When I met my husband he was a loving, caring and attentive man. Sure, he was forgetful sometimes and okay, maybe not all his plans worked out but everyone has that now and then, right?
Wrong! The minute we got married, things went downhill. The sex evaporated almost overnight (we’d had a very regular sex life up to that point), his forgetfulness got worse and any initiative that he used to have just seemed to have drained out of him.
We were both in very busy jobs and although we had settled into a routine (after a lot of arguments, I basically told him that he was responsible for the hoovering and the washing up), he would *never* do anything outside of his “hoover and wash up” remit. He would only do things if I told/asked him to do them. If the dog had made a mess, he wouldn’t clean it up, claiming “he hadn’t seen it”, if I was ill (which rarely happened because I’m very hard on myself) he wouldn’t cook, he wouldn’t clean, heck, he wouldn’t even bring me a glass of orange juice until I’d kicked his ass and told him he was being a selfish jerk.
I was ready to throw in the towel after just a year of marriage but I felt I couldn’t walk away that quickly. Now I wish I had done. At that time, we didn’t know he had ADD, that diagnosis came after a few more years of marriage. The turning point came when I told him I was ready to walk away because I was sick of feeling like a maid. All I seemed to be good for was cleaning, cooking and paying half the bills.
The sex had become non-existent which made me miserable too. I wasn’t allowed to touch him, or make the first move because “that put pressure on him to perform”, which meant that even little gestures were a no-no because he felt I was angling for sex (I wasn’t, but there you go) and when we did have sex, it was over in less than a minute. I kid you not. He would finish when I was nowhere near and then that would be it. I talked to him about it *so* many times. I told him that I understood he might not always be able to control his own orgasm but that I would appreciate it if he made sure I had a good time too. He would say he didn’t know what to do, so I explained it to him. Over and over and over again. Nothing ever made a difference because the next time, it would be the same “wham, Bam, thank-you-Ma’am”. I’ve bought him books, I pointed him to websites, I talked until the cows came home…nothing.
So, I told him I was done with him. He was shocked, didn’t understand where this came from (Really?? You mean all the arguments, all the “I feel completely unloved by you” didn’t give you any clues then??) and promised he’d try and be better. He made promises like that in the past and nothing ever came of it, so I told him that that ship had sailed. He said he wanted us to see a counselor. I said there was very little point to that because my feelings had taken such a beating, there was very little left of them. In the end, we did go to counseling because I wanted to make sure I had done *everything* I could to save this marriage (despite the fact that it had always been me flogging the dead horse anyway, but there you go). So, we went to counseling and as I was telling the counselor all the things that upset me and bothered me about the way our relationship had evolved, she asked if DH had ADD.
That was a complete epiphany! We never realized there might be a neurological problem! So, DH went to a counselor of his own, got a psychiatrist and *finally* got diagnosed. He got medication and in that first year, things were fantastic! I had the guy back that I had fallen in love with! Needless to say, my old feelings for him returned and it was bliss!
After that first year, things slowly started reverting back to “the old ways” again. His medication was tinkered with and usually brought a small respite but other than that, I feel we’re back where we were when I was ready to leave.
I am so frustrated and so fed up. I feel I have wasted over a decade of my life on a relationship that only *I* seem to value. And the sad part is, I don’t even know *why* I value it anymore The short bursts of ‘improvement’ always fills me with such hope, only to be crushed when I discover it’s not permanent. I have been the one to buy books about ADD, to encourage him to find a support group and to basically try and find a way for him to lead a relatively ‘normal’ life, yet he has done *nothing*. He says he wants me to stay but he doesn’t make any effort to read the books or even meet me halfway.
We share a lot of the same interests, have the same tastes and do enjoy each other’s company but I want an equal partner. I don’t want to be his mother, or his secretary. I want someone I can depend on, who can take care of me on the odd occasion that I need my hand holding and I realize he will never be that man. I know *all* of this and yet, I can’t seem to walk away!! What is wrong with me??